Author Topic: Audio BitTorrent Seeding Policy  (Read 2279 times)

Offline Simon

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Audio BitTorrent Seeding Policy
« on: October 31, 2006, 01:57:24 AM »
To maintain the highest quality and purity for the trading pool, we have compiled a list of rules for making good seeds. Please read this list carefully before seeding here. Each of these regulations are absolutely mandatory, and seeds that do not comply will be deleted from the tracker. Some rules will seem overbearing to some users, but these regulations are in place to ensure that we only spread recordings in "as good as it gets" quality so that all traders have equal opportunity to obtain the same music.

01. All seeds must be CD quality, lossless audio in FLAC, APE, or SHN format.

No seed that has been compressed to a lossy format at some point in the past will be accepted here. This includes mp3, ogg, aac, or any other lossy format. Also note that lossless filetypes other than FLAC, APE, and SHN are not permitted; this includes WAV, AIFF, ALC, MKW, Windows Lossless, Real Lossless, and any other lossless format.

A. Free Lossless Audio Codec (.flac)

The Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC for short) is currently the preferred format for trading lossless audio shows amongst many members of the community. It has many superior features including good compression ratio, native support for Vorbis tagging, a fingerprinting feature which causes files to be unusable if they become corrupted, increasing support amongst standalone media players, and is supported by a dedicated group of open source developers.
A feature that sets FLAC apart from all other major lossless formats is it's ability to self-test itself. Basically, any FLAC file stores an md5 checksum of the audio content contained within the file (also called the FLAC Fingerprint) within the header of the file itself. By using FLAC's "test" function, you are able to run the check on the audio, compare it to the fingerprint stored when the file was encoded, and confirm that they are the same. This is extremely useful when trading files through BitTorrent as it will confirm that the files you were downloaded completely and without being corrupted. You should run a "test" on every batch of files after every time they are transferred, especially over BitTorrent.
B. Monkey's Audio Lossless (.ape)

Monkey's Audio (which uses the .ape extension) is a file format that has recently rivaled FLAC for the top seat in the lossless file format arena. It provides superior file compression (on the highest setting it can compres files 10% smaller even than FLAC), has support for a robust system of file tagging, and is distributed through a very straight-forward and simple software frontend. For straight file archiving, the ape is king, allowing the best bang for your media storage buck.
Ape's main disadvantage to FLAC is it's lack of an inherent fingerprinting check. Also, this format is much more processor intensive than it's main competitor, and playing back or decompressing the files may drag some middle-range computers to a halt. While it's the least used of the three lossless formats used at this site, it has a well-deserved following of devotees and is becoming more popular every month.

C. Shorten (.shn)

The older and most well established of the three formats used at this site is called Shorten (.shn). Originally named for it's revolutionary concept of "shortening" the length of PCM wav data, this format is very well supported and widely used. The praise of the Shorten codec, however, is no longer lavished by many of today's technically adept lossless traders. Newer and more robust formats such as FLAC and APE have surpassed SHN in every possible category.
This disadvantages to these newer formats that Shorten is faced with runs the gamut from larger filesize, to lack of native seekability in media players, to no file tagging support, to an overly restrictive licensing agreement. The SHN format has embedded itself well within the archives of many longtime traders, but is doomed to slowly but surely start fading out. Very few people remain who use this for new seeds, and an increasing number of older seeds are being converted over.

02. No official or out-of-print material is allowed.

To keep our site legal, we will strictly enforce this ban on officially released songs being included on any seed. This includes any out-of-print or deleted albums or compilations with officially released songs.

03. When possible all seeds must include a complete and accurate lineage, indicating what formats and media the audio has previously used.

Here are some examples of legal lineages:

AUD > ? > Silver bootleg CD > EAC > WAV > Flac Frontend > FLAC (lvl 7)
SBD > Sony DAT > PC Digital Coax Input > WAV > CDWav > APE
FM > ? > CDRx (verified digitally clean) > iTunes (with error correction) > AIFF > xACT > FLAC

04. All seeds must include a text file with complete recording information, including bands, dates, venues, lineages, and setlists.

Please include as much information as you know. Any additional notes, reviews etc are desirable but at a bare minimum you must have a band title, venue/date, lineage and an accurate setlist included as part of your text file and the information should also be included in the thread. Any items missing this information may be deleted from our tracker.